Tag: Users

September 29, 2020

TikTok Launches ‘Elections Guide’ in the US to Provide Users with Accurate, Timely Voting Information

With the US Presidential Election now only 34 days away, TikTok has this week announced its new ‘Elections Guide’, which will help connect its users with authoritative voting information, and limit the spread of misleading reports and updates via the app.

TikTok Election Center

As you can see in these screenshots, TikTok’s Elections Guide will prompt eligible US users to register for the poll, while also providing official information on the voting process in each state via the National Association of Secretaries of State, BallotReady, SignVote, and more. 

As explained by TikTok:

“As with our COVID-19 resource hub, the election guide can be accessed from our Discover page and on election-related search results. We’ll also be linking to the guide at the bottom of videos relating to the elections and on videos from verified political accounts.”

So it’s pretty similar to the approach that both Facebook and Twitter are taking with their election awareness pushes – though you would expect that TikTok will have less of an impact in this regard, given that more than a third of its daily users in the US are aged 14 years old or younger.

But still, it could have an impact. Snapchat, for example, which also caters to a younger audience subset, recently reported that it’s already prompted 400,000 people to register to vote in 2020 via its in-app pushes. TikTok’s audience skews even younger than Snap’s, but any further pushes in this respect can have benefits, and can help drive awareness of civic participation.

And as we’ve seen, TikTok, despite its own efforts, has already been caught up in political controversy. Negotiations over the app’s sale to a US company are ongoing, and it may still face a full ban in the US if it can’t arrange a separation from its Chinese parent company. The rising tensions between China and the US have put the app in the middle of global trade discussions – so despite TikTok not accepting political ads and not being focused on news content, as such, it’s still involved in political messaging, in one way or another.

Given this, it makes sense for TikTok to align with the other social platforms and offer informational pushes. And even if they don’t end up having a major impact, it’s still worth TikTok, from a PR perspective, working to distribute accurate, timely, and helpful election information. 

Free Speech Social Media Platform

September 25, 2020

4 Prominent Ways Social Media Can Intensify An App’s Users Engagement

With people nowadays largely intertwined with mobile devices, businesses seek to build mobile applications for driving customers to their services or products. However, owing to the cut-throat competition in the apps market, appreneurs started realising the need for more deep and impactful strategies to raise customer engagement in their apps. Consequently, developers started integrating some effective social media avenues in apps apart from providing a great user interface and feature richness. The touch of social media can prove to be enough fruitful for the owners as it keeps the existing users hooked for longer beside attracting new users. So, here’s explaining some proven social media strategies that help in raising user engagement in apps.

#1 One-click share

Mobile apps that offer easy share options are more likely to engage the users better. With a one-click button for sharing on popular social sites like Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, apps readily allow the users to share anything they have liked, used and find interesting on the app with their friends on their social accounts. This not only gives app’s visibility on the social media but also help drawing customers from worldwide regions.

#2 Share of reward points or achievements

To make engagement on apps more exciting and tempting, makers can embed the feature of social sharing of user’s achievements on them. Many mobile applications depending on the utility let users earn reward points, virtual coins or scores with every step/stage they proceed. For instance, users of fitness apps are assigned with scores for the total miles walked with every passing day. Henceforth, allowing users to share their endeavors on their social account pages provide in them a sense of motivation. There’s pour in appreciation comments or congratulatory wishes on their performance report from social network circles which boost the confidence in users and lure others too to join the hard-hitting race.

#3 Referral programs

Mobile apps can gain considerable new users from nowhere by making their app viral overnight with specific social targeting. Referral programs in the app can help in that! Such schemes encourage the existing users to draw other new users by sending the app’s links to their social media friends. They are offered in return some appropriate reward points which they can redeem later for availing the app’s offers. Thus, referral schemes are a proven way to scale up the user base and can increase it at most by 15%.

#4 Tools for socialisers

Users love discussing common topics on social media platforms and know each other’s opinion. Hence, allowing users to get responses for their interests in the app is one effective way to increase engagement. The developers or owners can provide an easy feature in the app through which users can post their views, queries and seek answers from non-users in the social media. Such type of interaction on the social media helps inevitably in keeping users engaged and active on the app.

These are the some of the tried and tested techniques for engaging users of mobile applications through mass platforms. These help appreneurs to acquire more users by spreading word about their application as anything shared on social media platforms generate enough curiosity and lure the interested ones to try the same.


September 24, 2020

Twitter Shares Insights into the Effectiveness of its New Prompts to Get Users to Read Content Before Retweeting

Back in June, Twitter added a new pop-up alert on articles that users attempt to retweet without actually opening the article link and reading the post.

Twitter read prompt

After a full three months of implementation, today, Twitter has shared some new insight into the effectiveness of the prompt, and how it’s changed user behavior when they’re shown the alert.

According to Twitter:

  • People open articles 40% more often after seeing the prompt
  • People opening articles before retweeting increased by 33%
  • Some people didn’t end up retweeting after opening the article – “which is fine – some Tweets are best left in drafts”

Those are some pretty impressive numbers, underlining the value of simple prompts like this in getting users to think twice about what it is they’re distributing through their social media activity.

Adding any level of share friction seems to have some effect. Back in 2016, Facebook added similar pop-ups on posts which had been disputed by third-party fact checkers, prompting users to re-think their intention before they hit ‘Share’.

Facebook fact-check prompt

Analysis conducted by MIT found that these labels reduce people’s propensity to share misinformation by around 13%, while Facebook has since also added new prompts when users attempt to share a link that’s more than 90 days old, reducing the spread of outdated content.

It seems that simple pushes like this can actually have a big impact. And while free speech advocates have criticized such labels as being overly intrusive, if the net effect is less blind sharing, and more reading and research into topics, then that’s surely a good thing that can only benefit online discourse.

Given the success of the new prompts, Twitter’s now working to bring them to all users globally (currently only available on Android), while it’s also looking to make the alerts smaller after their initial display to each user.

And clearly, the impacts could be significant. While the above figures may not hold in a broader launch of the option, the numbers do show that the prompts are at last somewhat effective, and can help in reducing ill-informed sharing, and the distribution of misinformation.

Free Speech Social Media Platform

September 24, 2020

LinkedIn Launches Updated Look, Makes LinkedIn Stories Available to All Users

LinkedIn has given its platform a new, fresh update, while it’s also announced the global rollout of LinkedIn Stories after trying it out in selected nations over the past five months.

First off, on LinkedIn’s new look – as you can see in this screenshot, the new LinkedIn looks brighter, with a pastel-type color scheme on a gray and white background – and less blue overall.

New look LinkedIn

As explained by LinkedIn:

“Two years ago, our brand evolved to better reflect LinkedIn’s community of members and organizations that come together to help, support, and inspire one another. Now, we’re bringing the next chapter of this brand evolution to life across our platform with an entirely new look and feel that embodies our diverse, inclusive, warm and welcoming community.”

The update is mostly aesthetic, but LinkedIn’s also added a range of new features and tweaks to coincide with the new format.

The main addition is the global rollout of LinkedIn Stories.

LinkedIn Stories

As noted, LinkedIn has been testing Stories over the last few months, with users in Brazil, the Netherlands, Australia, UAE and France able to access to option. The roll-out of LinkedIn Stories seemed to slow of late, with Australia being the last region to get access back in June, but according to LinkedIn, user reception for Stories has been ‘amazing to see’.

Now, everyone will be able to try it out – and while it hasn’t become a major function of note as yet, the broader audience could give Stories a boost. Stories will be rolling out to Canadian and US users from this week, with all other regions to come shortly.

Along with the roll-out of Stories, LinkedIn’s also revamped its search process to incorporate more of its functions into your search matches. 

“Before, search was about finding people or jobs but now, you’ll have one blended search experience to easily find jobs, people, courses, groups, content and more. For example, if you’re searching for “Java,” you’ll see what’s new to learn that skill, jobs that are being hired for, relevant groups to join so you can connect with others and people you might know who have Java as a skill.”

LinkedIn search update

LinkedIn’s also making searches more personalized, with results from your connections more likely to show up, and it’s added keyword filters on mobile, which, up till now, has only been available n the web version.

LinkedIn’s also incorporating the capability to launch a video meeting via a LinkedIn message, with integrations for Microsoft Teams, Bluejeans and Zoom.

It’s also adding some other new messaging tricks, like editing functionality for sent messages:

“If you make a mistake in a message, you can now edit/delete a sent message.”

LinkedIn message editing

There’s also a new bulk actions option in your message stream, so you can delete or archive your messages all at once, and new reactions within message threads.

LinkedIn Reactions in messages

Quick reactions to messages has become a fairly common functionality, so it makes sense to LinkedIn to add it in, aligning with general usage trends. 

These are some interesting functions and tools, which add to the ways in which you can connect and communicate on the platform. And the new look does add something different, maybe removing some of the corporate stuffiness that’s lingered on the platform and giving it a new sense of life.

LinkedIn’s rolling out these new features from today, so if you’re not seeing them yet, you will soon.   

Free Speech Social Media Platform

September 23, 2020

TikTok Announces Bans on Ads for Weight-Loss Related Products in Order to Protect Users from Self-Perception Concerns

TikTok has announced some new steps that it’s taking to ensure that it’s protecting users from body-shaming and self-esteem issues, with new bans on weight loss ads, and new tools to help connect users to professional services to assist with related concerns.

As explained by TikTok

“As a society, weight stigma and body shaming pose both individual and cultural challenges, and we know that the internet, if left unchecked, has the risk of exacerbating such issues. That’s why we’re focused on working to safeguard our community from harmful content and behavior while supporting an inclusive – and body-positive – environment.” 

In line with this, TikTok has updated its ad policies to ban all ads for fasting apps and weight loss supplements, while it’s also increasing restrictions on ads that “promote a harmful or negative body image”.

Further to this, TikTok will also now also enforce new restrictions on ads which make exaggerated claims about diet and weight loss products, including:

  • Weight management products can only reach users age 18+
  • Stronger restrictions on weight loss and implied weight loss claims
  • Further restrictions to limit irresponsible claims made by products that promote weight loss management or control
  • Ads promoting weight loss and weight management products or services cannot promote a negative body image or negative relationship with food

Some of these regulations may be difficult to implement effectively, and will require human review, but TikTok is also, reportedly, adding 25,000 new staff in the US, which may, in part, be in preparation for this increased workload.

And it is indeed an important policy shift. 

A recent report from The New York Times suggests that more than a third of TikTok’s daily users in the US are aged 14 or younger, which means that the platform has very high reach to an extremely impressionable audience. The app’s overall user base also skews young, and with so many filters and editing tools available, you’re really not comparing yourself to a realistic image of the person you’re seeing in your TikTok feed a lot of the time.  

That can definitely lead to negative self-perception, and as TikTok continues to grow, it’s important that it takes steps to ensure that it’s protecting its users where it can.

Cracking down on weight loss related content is significant in this regard.

In addition to this, TikTok is also expanding its partnership with the National Eating Disorder Association (NEDA) to add new prompts for the NEDA hotline in searches related to body image related content.

“In addition, TikTok will be supporting Weight Stigma Awareness Week (September 28 – October 2) by launching a dedicated page in our app to support NEDA’s #EndWeightHateCampaign. This page will be featured in our Discover tab and will educate our community about what weight stigma is, why it should matter to everyone, and how they can find support or support others who may be struggling.”

Again, given the younger skew of the TikTok audience, these are important steps – and definitely, those weight loss supplement ads have been problematic, with many people reporting the flood of such campaigns within the app.

TikTok still has a way to go in protecting its users, but this is a positive move that could have a major impact.

Free Speech Social Media Platform